One of the hardest parts about adulting is really dealing with the financial aspect. How can we convince our parents (or even ourselves) that we are mature individuals ready to face the world if our finances are all over the place? This cash-related frenzy can stress us out to the point of driving us nuts! So to help you get in tip-top shape, here is a list of tips on how to become a financially responsible adult.
Spend less than what you can afford.
Living within your means has been an age-old advice, but it still rings true! Start by making it a monthly goal to keep even just a little bit of your paycheck (like $10) at the end of each month. This includes not overusing that credit card too!
Live up to your budget plan.
When you start earning, it is best to know how much you make and where they all go. Create a budget and stick to it!
Secure a rainy day fund.
Make sure you have an emergency fund set aside that’s made up of around three to six months’ worth of your living costs. Remember that unexpected things happen and that you should be prepared for them when they show up.
Saving some of your earnings for your future is always something to think about. Consider putting your money in either a 401(k), an IRA, a ROTH IRA, or a money market account.
Avoid late payments.
Make it a habit to pay all your bills on time. Paying late will not only incur additional charges but will also become a bad habit.
Check your annual credit report.
Make sure to be regularly updated about your own credit report. Once a year, just make a call and ensure that everything is in place and that nothing sketchy is going on under your name.
Study insurance plans.
Since you’re adulting now, it’s best to be covered by a life insurance plan. Look at what best fits your lifestyle and invest in it. Some other insurance plans you should also be considering are health, auto, homeowners, and disability insurance.
As shopping always seems like a good idea, I kid you not – it isn’t always a good idea. Avoid impulse buying and control yourself when it comes to sales, specials, and limited edition promotions. Learn to regulate your spending habits and invest in things that will really be special to you instead of hoarding things you don’t really need. Remember: buying something you don’t need always ends up expensive.
Try to be debt-free.
It’s not always possible to be totally debt-free, but when you do have repayments due, then stick to your schedule and get out of it as soon as you can. If you’re already debt-free, then do your best to stay that way!
Weigh your options every time money is involved. Before you buy something that’s in front of you, ask yourself if you can get exactly the same thing for a cheaper price, or if getting a more expensive item will last longer. Be scrutinizing with your spending. Learn to canvas. Make it a habit to know your options before choosing one.
Don’t stay unemployed.
If you’re out of a job, don’t be hopeless. There’s always an option somewhere, and sometimes, we can’t be too picky. Remember, any job will give you experience in something, so at the very least it will be a learning experience. Don’t be afraid of detours once in a while. Finances will get better soon, but only if you start earning again.
Do your job interviews right.
Knowing how to present yourself – from answering questions properly, shaking hands, and power-dressing – is something worth knowing if you want to get that dream job. So invest in the time and effort to practice the moves and wear the clothing that will get you hired.
Know your benefits.
You have a right to know all about the perks and benefits that your workplace can offer you. Don’t be afraid to ask about your options and actually use them. These might help you save some of your overhead costs too.
Read between the lines.
In any contract, from a gym membership to a house loan, always read the fine print. Know hidden charges and the scope and limitations of your contract. Make it a habit to know exactly what you are signing to avoid unpleasant surprises.
Know your taxes.
Every time you receive your payslip, always know what’s due to you and how much is taken out of it for taxes. Incorporate this deduction into your budget, so you know how much to expect on hand.
Lastly, receiving also means having the capacity to give. Remember to share your blessings because it will still come back to you in the end. Adulting is not only looking after yourself but also being responsible enough to look around and give what help you can.
Based on Materials from Still Being Molly
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